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Get the right help to distribute assets to heirs

If your loved one has passed away, then you may be tasked with taking care of their estate. Sorting out an estate can be a lot of work, but there are some tips that can help you simplify the process.

To begin with, realize that the executor is going to be the person in charge of handling the estate. If there is no will or trust in place, then a probate court may appoint an administrator to handle the estate's distribution and to resolve any remaining issues with the estate.

What does an executor have to do?

An executor needs to pay off debts, locate assets and distribute any remaining assets to living heirs and beneficiaries. Normally, an executor is not going to be an heir or beneficiary of the estate, since it would create a conflict of interest.

Executors may have to deal with the probate process, which occurs when there is no will. However, most people will put their assets into revocable or irrevocable trusts or use a will. That helps keep the estate out of probate so that the remaining family members don't have to spend time in court.

Should you work with a professional executor?

If there is no one to assign as an executor, then you may want to hire one. Attorneys and others may be qualified to become executors. Choose someone who has no interest one way or another in the estate's assets so that you know that they will act professionally and protect your loved one's interests as they handle the estate and its assets.

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